Somalis loot compound of Iranian aid agency

Mogadishu - The compound of an Iranian aid agency was looted in the Somali capital on Tuesday, five days after Mogadishu cut diplomatic relations with Tehran, officials said.

Unidentified armed militiamen as well as residents looted the compound, stealing computers and other equipment.

Security forces then stormed the compound, arresting several people, security official Mohamed Hassan said.

"Investigations are under way about who organized the looting," he added.

The severing of diplomatic relations has left Iranian property vulnerable to such incidents, said a Somali aid worker who declined to give his name.

The Foreign Ministry in Mogadishu said last week that Iran's diplomats had committed violations against Somalia by meddling in the country's internal affairs and playing a negative role in its stability, security and unity.

Somalia joined Saudi Arabia and several other countries in severing ties with Tehran after Iranian demonstrators attacked the Saudi embassy over Saudi Arabia's execution of a dissident Shi'ite cleric.

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